Thursday, January 27, 2011

First Impressions

I am having trouble believing that it has been only a little more than a week since I loaded up my minivan with books and a lamp and boys that I love, and drove ... and drove and drove and drove ... to a new home.

The drive actually went about as marvelously as it could have. Jack and Joey did so well. I am continually amazed at how resilient and able my children are. Children in general actually. I find that I often underestimate what my boys are capable of.

So far, Tucson is much more lovely than I was imagining. It has its own special look - that just happens to be so-not-Northwest. It is prickly and angular and very, very bright. Currently, it is also surprisingly cold. I am charmed by the giant shifts in temperature throughout the day. Yesterday I could see my breath when I walked out in the morning and by the middle of the afternoon I was ready to shed all my layers and lounge around in just my tee-shirt.

We found a lovely house to rent from a fun young couple who just happened to be making a quick out-of-state move at the same time we were. It is a little bit out of the city which means we will commute to all of our activities and I'll have to be efficient and thoughtful in my grocery and meal planning - but there are serious perks that made it work the drive for us. We are situated in a new community that is full of parks and the coolest pool you have ever seen! There are walking trails throughout the development and an elementary school right in the neighborhood.

We have only been in the house for a day, and that was spent unloading our moving truck and unpacking boxes, but so far I've seen small children run out from most of our neighbors' houses. I am looking forward to baking a big batch of something and introducing my family to the neighbors.

After a couple of interviews, we found a new CrossFit gym. There were two we were interested in. One was close to us and one was a little further away, but we picked the further one because the people there were significantly more friendly than the close one. They also have a beautiful gym that is situated in the artsy-est street I have discovered in Tucson yet. The doors on all the neighboring buildings are bright red or turquoise. There is a set of stairs painted a brilliant orange with teal tiles and one of the windows has some beautiful deep blue scrollwork on its screens. The gym also has a backyard set up for kids and when we were there last week, Jack didn't want to leave!

When I walked into the gym last week they were sharing their space with an art class. Very fun! I am looking forward to hunting out more colorful parts of the city. It seems that there are VERY distinct districts within Tucson. The "don't drive past that line" streets and the streets that attract artists and foodies. Because we have been getting our house squared away, we haven't even had time to wander through the city. We have just been finding the necessities.

I noticed that my list of "necessities" includes mostly things that fit into how I did life at home. Trader Joe's, Costco, Target, Starbucks ... and as I was checking off my list of need-to-know-locations, I decided something. I decided that the point of this whole Arizona Adventure isn't to just recreate my Washington-life in a new state. I want to be open to new ways of structuring my days and leave space for new attitudes and relationships to grow.

I feel so privileged to have this chance to adventure with my family. I don't want to forget that this truly is a gift. I want to be sure to be grateful and humble and open, not just waiting for good to happen to us - but seeking it out and being the one to plant goodness when we see needs and opportunities.

So even as I unpack, and try desperately to keep my family hydrated, and navigate new roads, I am praying for a heart that loves Tucson and sees God's hand, and hears his heart while we are here.

I'm off to moisturize my hands and continue wading through our boxes of life.

Enjoy your day friends!


Fauxto Girl said...

Emily, I'm glad you guys are getting situated so quickly. I'm so excited for your new beginnings and future endeavors!

hootenannie said...

I can't wait for pictures! Show me the turquoise and orange and red buildings. And your babies, too, of course. :)

So proud of you, sweet friend, for taking this adventure in stride.

emilyruth said...

so fun to follow your new adventure!
you have such a good attitude (sunny but realistic) , i know you will do great :)